Muskies are in their typical summer patterns and fishing is good to very good on most waters. Fish the weeds, weed edges, and slop in 4-12 feet of water with small to medium size twitch and topwater baits, bucktails, jerk baits, and small to medium muskie suckers.
Walleye action is a bit slow, in part due to mayfly hatches. Fish can be in shallow weeds or in deeper water, with depths ranging from four to more than 20 feet. Concentrate on weeds – beds, edges, and pockets – and brush. Use leeches and crawlers on slip bobbers, jigs, and harnesses, though fatheads and walleye suckers still work, as do plastics, Gulp! minnows, Beetle Spins, Twister Tails, and cast/trolled stick and crank baits.
Northern pike continue to be on the feed and you will find them in weeds, cabbage, and coontail as shallow as four feet out to deeper water. Best baits include spinner and buzz baits, spoons, Beetle Spins, Husky Jerks, rattling lures, and northern suckers.
Largemouth bass completed spawning and action is very good on most waters. The northern bass zone harvest season opened last Saturday, June 16. Look for largemouth in and along shallow weeds and weed beds, lily pads, and brush. Lures of choice include spinnerbaits, jig/plastic combinations, chatter baits, surface baits, spoons, and rigged worms.
Smallmouth bass have also completed their spawning in most waters and you will find them on weed flats, gravel edges, and hard bottom areas. Live bait and artificials are both effective for smallmouth.
Crappies are scattered in most lakes and in depths from 6-12 feet. Work in and along shallow weed edges, near brush, and around the cribs with crappie minnows, plastics, and Beetle Spins. Use jigs and/or bobbers with the live bait and artificials. Some anglers are having success fishing in the hour just before dark.
Bluegill anglers continue to enjoy good success in shallower water, though fish are starting to move slightly deeper, in particular bigger bluegills. Fish weeds, brush, and cribs in depths from 4-12 feet of water. Best baits include waxies, worms, and plastics on jigs or plain hooks, with or without bobbers. Try small minnows in deeper water for bigger ‘gills.
June 16: Northern zone bass season switched from catch-and-release to daily bag limits. (See regs.)